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Gender stereotypes across the ages: On-line processing in school-age children, young and older adults.

Siyanova-Chanturia A, Warren P, Pesciarelli F, Cacciari C - Front Psychol (2015)

Bottom Line: Across all age groups, participants were significantly faster to respond, and significantly more likely to press 'yes,' when the gender of the target was congruent with the stereotypical gender use of the preceding prime.These findings suggest that information about the stereotypical gender associated with a role noun is incorporated into the mental representation of this word and is activated as soon as the word is heard.In addition, our results show differences between male and female participants of the various age groups, and between male- and female-oriented stereotypes, pointing to important gender asymmetries.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Linguistics and Applied Language Studies, Victoria University of Wellington Wellington, New Zealand.

ABSTRACT
Most research to date on implicit gender stereotyping has been conducted with one age group - young adults. The mechanisms that underlie the on-line processing of stereotypical information in other age groups have received very little attention. This is the first study to investigate real time processing of gender stereotypes at different age levels. We investigated the activation of gender stereotypes in Italian in four groups of participants: third- and fifth-graders, young and older adults. Participants heard a noun that was stereotypically associated with masculine (preside "headmaster") or feminine roles (badante "social care worker"), followed by a male (padre "father") or female kinship term (madre "mother"). The task was to decide if the two words - the role noun and the kinship term - could describe the same person. Across all age groups, participants were significantly faster to respond, and significantly more likely to press 'yes,' when the gender of the target was congruent with the stereotypical gender use of the preceding prime. These findings suggest that information about the stereotypical gender associated with a role noun is incorporated into the mental representation of this word and is activated as soon as the word is heard. In addition, our results show differences between male and female participants of the various age groups, and between male- and female-oriented stereotypes, pointing to important gender asymmetries.

No MeSH data available.


Response times for ‘no’ responses to incongruent items (mean and standard error). The left panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Age Group and the right panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Participant Sex.
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Figure 4: Response times for ‘no’ responses to incongruent items (mean and standard error). The left panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Age Group and the right panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Participant Sex.

Mentions: The interactions of Target Gender with Age Group and Participant Sex are illustrated in the left and right panels of Figure 4 respectively. In the left panel we see that the fifth grade children gave faster ‘no’ responses to incongruent pairs that involved a male target following a female prime, while the adult groups and the third grade children showed no such difference. This pattern was confirmed in further analyses for each age group: the young and older adults and the third graders showed no effect of Target Gender (all ps > 0.7), whereas the difference was significant for the fifth graders (χ2 = 4.17, df: 1, p < 0.05). The interaction of Target Gender with Participant Sex shown in the right panel is one of degree rather than of direction (contrast the interaction effects for these variables in the analysis of ‘yes’ response times) – both male and female participants gave faster ‘no’ responses to incongruent pairs involving a male target (following a female prime), but this difference was larger for the male participants.


Gender stereotypes across the ages: On-line processing in school-age children, young and older adults.

Siyanova-Chanturia A, Warren P, Pesciarelli F, Cacciari C - Front Psychol (2015)

Response times for ‘no’ responses to incongruent items (mean and standard error). The left panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Age Group and the right panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Participant Sex.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4585124&req=5

Figure 4: Response times for ‘no’ responses to incongruent items (mean and standard error). The left panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Age Group and the right panel shows the interaction of Target Gender and Participant Sex.
Mentions: The interactions of Target Gender with Age Group and Participant Sex are illustrated in the left and right panels of Figure 4 respectively. In the left panel we see that the fifth grade children gave faster ‘no’ responses to incongruent pairs that involved a male target following a female prime, while the adult groups and the third grade children showed no such difference. This pattern was confirmed in further analyses for each age group: the young and older adults and the third graders showed no effect of Target Gender (all ps > 0.7), whereas the difference was significant for the fifth graders (χ2 = 4.17, df: 1, p < 0.05). The interaction of Target Gender with Participant Sex shown in the right panel is one of degree rather than of direction (contrast the interaction effects for these variables in the analysis of ‘yes’ response times) – both male and female participants gave faster ‘no’ responses to incongruent pairs involving a male target (following a female prime), but this difference was larger for the male participants.

Bottom Line: Across all age groups, participants were significantly faster to respond, and significantly more likely to press 'yes,' when the gender of the target was congruent with the stereotypical gender use of the preceding prime.These findings suggest that information about the stereotypical gender associated with a role noun is incorporated into the mental representation of this word and is activated as soon as the word is heard.In addition, our results show differences between male and female participants of the various age groups, and between male- and female-oriented stereotypes, pointing to important gender asymmetries.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Linguistics and Applied Language Studies, Victoria University of Wellington Wellington, New Zealand.

ABSTRACT
Most research to date on implicit gender stereotyping has been conducted with one age group - young adults. The mechanisms that underlie the on-line processing of stereotypical information in other age groups have received very little attention. This is the first study to investigate real time processing of gender stereotypes at different age levels. We investigated the activation of gender stereotypes in Italian in four groups of participants: third- and fifth-graders, young and older adults. Participants heard a noun that was stereotypically associated with masculine (preside "headmaster") or feminine roles (badante "social care worker"), followed by a male (padre "father") or female kinship term (madre "mother"). The task was to decide if the two words - the role noun and the kinship term - could describe the same person. Across all age groups, participants were significantly faster to respond, and significantly more likely to press 'yes,' when the gender of the target was congruent with the stereotypical gender use of the preceding prime. These findings suggest that information about the stereotypical gender associated with a role noun is incorporated into the mental representation of this word and is activated as soon as the word is heard. In addition, our results show differences between male and female participants of the various age groups, and between male- and female-oriented stereotypes, pointing to important gender asymmetries.

No MeSH data available.